Iranian energy companies lay out investment options in Amsterdam

Four Iranian energy companies set up a pavilion just as the Trump administration is expected to take a harder line on Tehran.
By Daniel J. Graeber Follow @dan_graeber Contact the Author   |  Oct. 11, 2017 at 7:11 AM
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Oct. 11 (UPI) -- Iranian oil and natural gas companies said Wednesday they were among the hundreds on hand in the Netherlands to introduce investment opportunities to the world.

Iranian energy companies are among the hundreds attending an annual offshore energy conference in Amsterdam, which wrapped up Wednesday. The Pars Oil and Gas Co., which helps drive operations at Iran's offshore South Pars natural gas field, said in a statement it was one of a handful of Iranian companies with a pavilion set up at the exhibition.

"Pars Oil and Gas Company, Iranian Offshore Oil Company, Iranian oil Terminals Company, and Petroleum Engineering and Development Company are among active companies in the offshore industry of Iran that have attended this exhibition in order to introduce the opportunities for international investors to participate in Iranian offshore industries," the company stated.

In its first contract in the post-sanctions era, a consortium of French energy company Total, China National Petroleum Corp. and Petropars Ltd., a subsidiary of the state-run National Iranian Oil Co., signed a 20-year contract in early July to help develop parts of the giant South Pars natural gas field in the Persian Gulf, among the largest in the world.

With Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, who helped steer the post-sanction economy, earning a second term in office earlier this year, the Total-led deal cleared a path for future investments from foreign energy companies. Rouhani's administration set a goal of signing 10 new development deals by the end of the Iranian calendar year, March 20.

The Amsterdam conference comes as U.S. President Donald Trump is expected to take a tougher line on Iran that could distance his administration from the multilateral 2015 deal that brought sanctions relief to Iran in exchange for commitments to back off its nuclear ambitions.

Remaining U.S. sanctions on Iran make it difficult to do business with the country. Governors from the Central Bank of Iran met in July with representatives from the International Monetary Fund to discuss lingering capital issues.

Speaking Wednesday, British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said his government is frustrated by Iran's role in the region, but supported the nuclear agreement nonetheless.

"The nuclear deal was a crucial agreement that neutralized Iran's nuclear threat," he said in a statement.

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